Idioms

    take shape, to assume a fixed form; become definite: The house is beginning to take shape.

Origin of shape

before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English gesceapu (plural); replacing dial. shap, Middle English; Old English gesceap (singular); cognate with Old Norse skap state, mood; (v.) Middle English; Old English sceapen (past participle); replacing Middle English sheppe, shippe, Old English sceppan, scyppan; cognate with German schaffen, Old Norse skepja, Gothic -skapjan to make

SYNONYMS FOR shape

4 specter, illusion.
7 order, pattern.
8 order, situation.
14 mold, model.

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for take shape (1 of 2)

shape

/ (ʃeɪp) /

noun

verb

Derived Forms

shapable or shapeable, adjectiveshaper, noun

Word Origin for shape

Old English gesceap, literally: that which is created, from scieppan to create; related to sceap sexual organs, Old Norse skap destiny, Old High German scaf form

British Dictionary definitions for take shape (2 of 2)

SHAPE

/ (ʃeɪp) /

n acronym for

Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Idioms and Phrases with take shape (1 of 2)

take shape


Also, shape up. Turn out, develop, acquire a distinctive form, as in Her reelection campaign is already taking shape, two years before the election, or Can you tell us how the book is shaping up? The first term dates from the mid-1700s and the variant, originally put as shape out, from about 1600.

Idioms and Phrases with take shape (2 of 2)

shape


In addition to the idiom beginning with shape

  • shape up

also see:

  • bent out of shape
  • in condition (shape)
  • lick into shape
  • take shape
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.